What A Week!

Dear Family and Friends,

This last week I could Honestly say was the most successful week of my mission! To give you a quick summary we are now working with three families and two will for sure be baptized! We found a lady who is likely to help us start a Branch in Tai O and We got to top the week off with Ho Siu Ming being baptized. The Lord rained down his blessing on us this last week. Me and my companion where brought humbly to our knees many times last week. I have no idea why its taken me so long to figure missionary work out and the saddest thing is now I am about to head home. Luckly I can apply what I learned anywhere I go. The mission has changed my life in Dramatic ways. I see now from a perspective that I never even could have comprehended. I really can reflect on my mission and see how all the experiences that I have had on my mission which where all so vital in slowly shaping and humbling me to the mold the lord would have. I know that God lives with all my heart and his love for each one of us is so deep and so strong.

We first have been working with a member in our ward who has been working with a Less Active and we helped him home teach a few weeks back and because of the way we taught we really earned his trust and so then he introduced us to another part member less active family and now that whole family has come to church except one daughter but we will see them again this next week. We taught them all twice last week and they are so awesome! 3 kids 15,16, and 17. Which is great because the branch could use some more in those age groups.

Another Part Member Less Active Family we found through our own efforts as Elder Dale simple invited this Sister we see all the time to church. She then came and with her kids as well then last week went to her house and taught her whole family and even her husband and set all the kids dates. The husband has not accepted yet but we will get him. They have 3 kids as well.

We also Helped a struggling Recently Reactivated member, whose wife is one of our Recent Converts, commit to keeping the Sabbath Day. Its a huge struggle in this branch among the brothren to not work on sunday and this brother had not come to church in 3 weeks. Which is totally his choice because he runs his own business. But after a powerful lesson and a lot of overcoming excuses, bearing testimony, and promising blessings I never seen anyone more excited to keep the Sabbath Day Holy. I love sharing the story of my own father and his own acts of faith keeping the Sabbath because many people here think Hong Kong is different than america, when really its the same.

We also got introduced to one of the nicest ladies in all of Hong Kong. She is this 65 year old woman named Diana who lives in the Stilt homes in Tai O. She is so popular among the Locals. Thanks to the Senior Missionaries the Chamberlains who found her on their own P-day. We went and visited her and her home already feels like a members home and she already has Christ in her countenance. We taught a powerful lesson and then she went and introduced us to the whole village we were in several other peoples homes. its amazing how nice and open people are when your friends with one of their friends. There is so much potential here. She will be coming to a ward activity this week.

I could keep going but really there is so much exciting things to be done in missionary work if we just open our eyes humble ourselves before the lord and don’t get in the way of our most creative creator, by really on the strick narrow minded tactics of the world. We really feel we have caught the vision and we met with the sisters last week to talk about how we could keep trying to help the other missionaries to do the same.

But the Success we have had is only possible because of the unity we have with the sister training leaders! We have worked so well that both of our companionships have seen so many miracles! Because we just bounce off of each other and fill each other in on our success which then gives us more ideas. We have been able to help so many others catch the vision as well.

Anyways I love you all and I want to bear my Simple testimony that Jesus Christ really is the way to true happiness.

Love,
Elder Jared Cordon

Then and There!

WOW! What a week of Miracles let me share the first. Well we met this man who stopped us on the street and when we first met him he was high on some pretty heavy drugs. He said he wanted our help and to learn about god and change his life but, we were heading to a lesson and he was to high to help him then anyways so we traded numbers and moved along. Well we called him the next day and had a chance to see him for a little time. Luckily he was sober so it was a good discussion, we taught him the next day with a member and then later went to a baptismal service for the Tsing Yi ward. He really enjoyed the service and said he wanted to be baptized and afterwards we quickly told him that he needs to start quitting drugs now and he threw away his cigarettes right then and there. the next day he came to English class so, we were getting some good daily contact with him. We also found out that two years ago he got a divorce and his wife wants him back because they have a 10 year old daughter. He wants her back as well but knows he needs to change himself for it to work. So the perfect opportunity for him and us. But then next day he fongs (*editors note: dodges) our lesson and wont answer the phone. We thought we lost him. But Sunday morning Elder Dale gives him another call and he answers and we get him to come to church with us(shirt and tie as well). Testimony meeting ends up being the best one of my mission, I was on the end of my seat for every single one. After the meeting he tells us that he purposely avoided us the day before and decided that he was down and was not gonna keep meeting us. But he said he didn’t know why he answered the phone this morning because he knew it was us. Then when he came to church he said the feeling was so powerful and he cant even explain it, he said he has never felt that in any other church or religion before(and he has been to a lot). He also said he has tried to quit drugs many time but to no avail, but this time once we invited him to clean himself up after the baptism he has not had a single urge to do any drugs, to smoke, and even drink. We will see him again tomorrow at his house. But this is God at work when we don’t let our pride get in the way.

The other Miracle is with our investigator Dexter He has seen an amazing transformation over the last month and has prepared himself well. He faced some strong opposition last night from his grandparents after he passed his interview, and the amazing thing is, his first reaction was to pray then call us. We had the branch president come over to the church and we sat down with Dexter, helping figure it out so he can prepare himself for baptism.

The Lord is outpouring his blessings upon Tung Chung right now. In addition to that new investigator we also started working with 2 less active part member families, thanks to the work of an amazing member who wants are branch to be a ward and a chapel on Lantau Island so bad he spends all his days off visiting and finding less actives. We have really good unity with the ward so work is getting down. We did not have any scheduled finding time but we still found ourselves doing a lot of finding. As far as the 10 a day invitation from Elder Ballard I would say I am getting close but still got some room to get better. We talk to as many people as we can. Elder Dale and I are getting along great and we are working hard to be worthy to receive the blessings the has for Tung Chung

Zone Training was great we focused on just getting people inspired and becoming visionary to many people think missionary work is just tracting all the time. That’s really not at all and actually the companionship’s that do that are doing the worst. The lord wants us to use our heads and get creative, find ways to work more with members. We have been doing this and we are so busy we never have time to find! Also we spend so much time with members that they are so motivated to keep working. They also know that we are busy and they see the fruits of our work. The testimony meeting yesterday was so amazing. Almost every single person that spoke shared an experience they have been having with us recently, it brought me such joy because I had no Idea they were that appreciative of my efforts.

I love missionary work and I never knew it could be this good when I started, it literally has been just a continuous climb for my entire mission. I love it and if feels so good being so close to God, I think the greatest blessing is I have learned what I need to do to continue to feel this blessing after my mission.

If you not happy do missionary work, there is not better cure, and if you are happy well don’t be selfish and do some missionary work and help make others happy.

I love you all and so grateful for your support!

Elder Jared Cordon

NINE DRAGONS!

Dear Family & Friends,

I am in Kowloon Zone and Kowloon in Chinese means 9 Dragons so I in the 9 Dragons zone, probably the coolest name for a zone!

Well it was an amazing week last week!! We had some really cool miracles! We were able to solidify two people in preparing themselves for baptism this next month and working on one more. Also we have another young man who is looking very promising coming up quick. The most important thing for these people is definitely getting them converted and one I think is helping is giving people short powerful commitments. People don’t need time to baptized they just need to be converted. We were not able to add any new investigators to the teaching pool but we did add two less actives and now have some part members that we are starting to get things going. We find that real success is really working the ward members so we are working to keep a really strong relationship with them and to keep referrals coming. Thats something we need to be better at doing is getting referrals. But we have thought of some good ways to do that. Another thing thats been taking up our time is working with a lot of Recent Converts. Its so important to keep these people progressing and none of the converts this year have been to the temple yet, so big thing to focus on there. Also we are working on trying to get family history really moving here so we scheduled a member to teach us with her family then we can then teach our less actives, recent converts and investigators. Really the ultimate goal in doing it will be to get them to the temple. We have a temple in Hong Kong and I feel like its so underused sometimes.

This last week we met with the Sister Training leaders to plan up zone training and that was one of the most inspired meetings that I have been apart of. we were all just getting so many amazing ideas that we feel will transform this zone. We saw miracles this last month as far as families goal. As a zone we set a pretty high goal and we ended beating it by two and it was interesting, because we didn’t focus on families directly, it was indirectly influenced by the focus on teaching in the home. We also beat our member present goal as well which was another indicator we were hoping to indirectly influence as well. I just have noticed that when you have a vision and you pray for that vision and you wake up everyday working to achieve that vision the lord will really bless us and help us accomplish our dreams. We noticed that as we did some consecrated family finding this last week and got exactly what we prayed for.

Also I want you all to know that my companion is the most powerful man I have ever seen. He has been preforming miracles here in Tung Chung and I just get the privileged to sit back and watch. He is so intuned with the spirit and we mesh so well. We have plenty of fun let me tell you, but we also go to work.

Missionary work is the most satisfying work I have ever done and thats also because its the most important work I have ever been apart of. I know this church is true and I know that salvation only comes through Jesus Christ and living his gospel. Its this truth that motivates me and brings me the joy that comes from missionary work.

Love
Elder Cordon

Temple Day

Dear Family & Friends,

Today was amazing! I love the Hong Kong temple it really is such a special place and I feel so blessed to have so many opportunities to be able to go! Also we had interviews today and I really love president and Sister Lam they are really so amazing!

This last week was truly amazing and it felt really long but was very event filled! Being with summer missionaries was challenging in a great way it taught me so much and I really grew a lot. I really feel like the summer missionary program is amazing and a wonderful way to build more unity between members and missionaries because both of those brothers are going home with a new determination to do more missionary work in their own wards! Also us missionaries learn to appreciate more and more the members of Hong Kong!

Some other eventful things is on Friday we ran into the Branch President as he was cleaning the chapel! And after talking for a short time we were able to plan a BBQ for the next day. It was a bit of a rush, and when the BBQ started there was only one person there other than us but shortly later we had a lot of people show up. It was all the younger men of the branch and the Branch president. We had a Less Active a recent convert and 3 investigators there and they all loved it. It was a wonderful success and it was a wonderful time to get some relationships start building. I really feel that the branches or wards that embrace lots of activities really have better unity!

I love working with the branch and we are seeing a lot of members open up to us more!

The Home teaching plan and action is working so well! The whole zone is doing amazing! We had set a goal for 80 lessons at homes but we already have 93 and still another week to go! When we started this plan Elder Dale prophesied to the whole zone that we would see miracles in teaching families and that has totally come true! We really reached hi when we set our family lesson goal and we are on track to be making it. we are seeing that almost every unit is working at least one family now. I know that getting more families in the church is really whats going to boost the work in Hong Kong, because peoples spiritual potential is so limited without families!

Really the mission life is the best life I am loving and just want to enjoy every minute that I have left!

Thank you all for being so supportive.

Elder Jared Cordon

A Lot of New

Dear Family and Friends,

We got summer missionaries, priority is to strengthen them and help them want to serve full missions!   

 We are already seeing miracles in the part member family area of this Branch. One Sister wants us to help her Husband who has been staying away for over 20 years! But he has just had a big change of heart and is searching for more in Life! So we have followed our mission Presidents advice and strengthened that sister and she is really doing all the work! It would be great if he could meet him later.

Well work in Tung Chung is flourishing and it seems to keep getting better. We have 6 baptismal Dates and 3 of them will get baptized next week! All of which are very excited about their Dates and its a great motivation for the Branch. Our other dates are not that solid but this last week we saw two of our other dates who were laying pretty low start taking off! Both were because of of cool miracles, One we had a bunch of stuff change our schedule but it ended up that we ran into him on the street and he had a total change of perspective. The other we had a last minute member willing to help teach so we taught at their house and it was really good they will be great new long term fellowshippers.

We had a great church miracle yesterday we brought this kid to church and he has come before but he thought it was boring but yesterday he became good friends with another young men and now he loves church! Real friends makes all the difference!

Everything is going so well! We are really so blessed.

Love Elder Cordon

Staying Busy

Dear Family and Friends,

Well its been a powerful week. We were quite busy and did not have any time to really get out and its weird I thought we worked hard but it seemed weird by the end of the week. But as we look back over our week, we saw we did a lot of teaching and still had opportunities to find people. Looking into July I am a little nervous as far as achieving our future goals there is only 4 solid dates in the zone leading into July and 3 of them are from us. I feel like what helped our dates become solid is putting a quicker date and adding urgency I feel like there is a few investigators in the zone that could be ready for July if we add some urgency.

The 3 people that we have for July are Sister Wong and her Daughter Lindy, they are really great and they have really answered the call to prepare themselves for baptism. Both are doing really good about reading, in fact Sister Wong has been doing some really cool studies after each of our lessons. She uses the pamphlets and does a deeper study on the lessons using the questions in the back. The other date is Ho Siu Ming also a great guy who is willing to keep going, he wants his family to have the gospel and with all three of these people they will be planning on us introducing them to their families here soon.

We have some other Baptismal dates and a handful of other investigators that could all be starting to really progress here shortly. The Lord is really blessing us. We go out the door everyday expecting Miracles and everday they keep happening. We are constantly finding those opportunities arise that requires to be brave and open our mouths. One for instance Elder Dale really impressed me as he contacted this man sitting next to us on a bus, luckily it was a long one out to the Village of Mui Wo. I had seen the guy and shy away but he just moved over a seat and said “do you mind if I practice my Chinese”. Well the man was happy to accept then Elder Dale practiced all of his first lesson vocab while he was at it. We ended up getting off the bus at the same stop, taught him prayer and rescheduled him and his girlfriend for next week. I guess there used to be a branch out here in Mui Wo. We would love to bring it back! We are also working with a less active out there as well and found that there is two full families that are less active that live out there.

Things really are going so well. Elder Dale and I have very similar mindsets which has made having unity come really easy! We also are both just really excited about the work and have a real good vision for this area.

Love You all!

Elder Jared Cordon

Old York and New York

Dear Family and Friends,

My new companion is so powerful and so awesome! Elder Dale from Yorkshire England! So we are getting the Old York (He is from “Old” York) and the New York (I am from New York).

Well I cannot be more excited about the new opportunities I was sad to leave TST and now I am excited to serve Tung Chung. Again I am extremely blessed to move into an area that is prospering from the efforts of these amazing Elders I hope to only Establish and take it beyond that. Elder Dale and I had some immediate excitement with shortly after being together we met with two investigators and we decided to set and short date with a lady and her daughter. they have been coming to church and still have a good amount to learn but the spirit was strong and they both accepted with a lot of excitement. We are trying to apply the wisdom Elder Holbrook taught: that big commitment and follow through get people to really change.

This area has a lot of excitement with 3 baptismal dates coming up quick and a few to quickly follow there is a lot to do to make sure these people make their dates. Well after discussing how we could do that we came up with two idea. First is what we call “Home Teaching” we are going to get rid of the mission culture of always teaching people at the church and start teaching people in their homes, and if not their homes then in members homes. We have already scheduled all our appointments thus far this week. It has multiple benefits that we can see:

  • 1 we know where they live now
  • 2 it takes a lot less of their time if they don’t need to travel
  • 3 it allows for quick follow up visits
  • 4 it gives us exposure to potentially their families for more investigators
  • 5 they are more comfortable
  • 6 if we get fonged (they don’t show up) then at least we know quickly and we are already out among people to easily start finding
  • 7 it allows us to get into places we normally cant go (which can help the Lord put people in our path)
  • 8 if a member lives near by it would take less of their time.

These are some of the ideas we thought of. The other thing we are planning on doing is Daily Contact from ward members. We have drawn up a calender and are going to get the ward members to sign up to have a member whats app our investigators everyday and then call a few times a week. We realize its extremely important to keep that contact so we can have people effectively reach quicker baptismal dates.

I think its awesome that almost all the elders appartments in the zone only have one set of elders. I feel like it will be one of our most effective moves yet. I myself am very excited to be able to remove more distractions that might be keeping me from working and staying focus. Elder Dale is so focused and I can honestly say that I have not met a missionary yet who loves all of their investigators and ward members as much as he does. I think his ability to love them is a big part of why he is so successful!

We have a busy week ahead and it looks like we wont have very much if any time to find but we are trying our best to be talking to people at all times and in all places!

Happy Fathers Day

Love
Elder Jared Cordon